Sullivan: A quick review of how playoff offense has worked

From Jeff Sullivan at FanGraphs on October 3, 2017:

The MLB playoffs select for the best teams, and the rosters of those teams additionally select for the best players. As a consequence, nearly every playoff team is likely to feature an above-average offense, and an above-average pitching staff. In reality, the pitchers tend to be better than the hitters, and this leads to people believing statements like “good pitching beats good hitting.” It’s certainly true that, in October, run-scoring output is reduced, relative to the regular season. Every run is important, and not only because every game is important.

With the first game of the 2017 playoffs just a short while away, I thought I’d quickly review what playoff offense has looked like. I say “review” because I’m sure we’ve covered this ground before, but there’s no harm in going back to the same points every 12 months. This time of year, at the plate, should you be hoping for contact, or should you be hoping for power? Both approaches have managed to win championships, yet one has seemed more helpful than the other.

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Originally published: October 4, 2017. Last Updated: October 4, 2017.